California Proposes Public Health Goals For PFOA And PFOS

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On July 22, 2021 the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (“OEHHA”) released a Draft Technical Support Document proposing a public health goal (“PHG”) of 0.007 parts per trillion (ppt) for PFOA and 1 ppt for PFOS.  OEHHA also proposed noncancer health-protective concentrations of 3 ppt for PFOA and 2 ppt for PFOS.  The draft PHGs form the basis for development of California’s MCLs, but MCLs must consider economic and technical feasibility in addition to health impacts.  The public comment period for the draft PHGs began on July 30, 2021 and ends September 28, 2021. In August 2019, the State Water Board lowered the drinking water notification levels in California for PFOA and PFOS to 5.1 ppt and 6.5 ppt, respectively.  In February 2020, the State Water Board lowered the response levels for PFOA and PFOS from 70 ppt combined to 10 ppt for PFOA and 40 ppt for PFOS. Whether the PHGs will result in lowering California’s MCLs remains to be seen.

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